Report on “Developing Mathematical Models in Healthcare: Special Workshop on System Dynamics”

Report on “Developing Mathematical Models in Healthcare: Special Workshop on System Dynamics”

On Wednesday 27th January 2016 a special seminar on System Dynamics applied to healthcare was held at the School of Mathematics, Cardiff University. This was part of their regular Developing Mathematical Models in Healthcare seminar series. The event brought together experts in the field to talk about a selection of System Dynamics based projects in health and social care.

The seminar opened with a short introduction to System Dynamics, demonstrating the core concepts of accumulation and feedback when modelling a complex health system.

This was followed by a presentation by Dr Siôn Cave, a consultant with Decision Analysis Services Ltd. Siôn gave a short overview of a number of projects (population behaviour, disease transmission, public health intervention and disease modelling) to reflect the variety of contexts where he has used System Dynamics. Siôn then focused on two high impact national projects (national workforce planning and Horizon 2035: modelling the future of health and social care) to highlight the value of the method.

Finally, Douglas McKelvie, a partner at The Symmetric Partnership, discussed using System Dynamics to improve strategic decision making. The presentation focused on two projects: modelling winter pressures on a healthcare system and modelling (health) service integration to examine whether (and when) the cost of an intervention will be offset by savings.

The speakers kindly agreed to make their slides available. Please find them here:

Some useful resources mentioned in the seminar:

Finally, echoing the final remarks of Professor Paul Harper at the event, please get in touch with Jo Emery ( if you would like further details regarding hosting an MSc project.

CfWI use system dynamics to inform a strategic review of the future dentistry workforce

The Centre for Workforce Intelligence is the national authority on workforce planning and development, providing advice and information to the health and social care system. The CfWI was commissioned by Health Education England (HEE) and the Department of Health (DH) to forecast and analyse the future supply of and demand for the English dental workforce between 2012 and 2040. The report will support HEE, DH and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) in policy decision-making to secure the dental workforce of the future and specifically the number of students required. System dynamics was used to support the strategic analysis. The final report is available here.

System dynamics based credit card market simulation

On November 19, David Starr (Cooper Human Systems) and Sharon Els (PA Consulting Group) will present a live Webinar that tells the story of a project carried out for MasterCard and the performance improvements that resulted.  The SD model to be discussed in the presentation enabled the identification 0f strategies that drove structural change. More details here.

Networking Meeting, London, 2nd May 2012

Networking Meeting

Date: 2nd May 2012
Venue: Crosse Keys
Time: 6:00pm start, presentation at 7pm.

We will be holding a networking meeting in London on May 2nd from 6pm onwards. It will be held at The Crosse Keys, 9 Gracechurch Street, City of London, London, EC3V 0DR, food and cash bar available. Booking is not necessary but if you are able to come it would be helpful to know approximate numbers, just reply to this email.

At this meeting we will have a discussion on: How far can you trust a model when using it to inform decision-making?

Dr Robert Thurlby will lead the initial discussion.

Bob is an expert in the strategic issues facing the utilities industries, notably the effective long-term management of their costly networks of physical assets. In recent years, this range of issues has seen a growing focus on major risks faced by such firms, arising from climate change, criminality, terrorism and other factors. After an extensive career within the industry, including senior positions with BT and Serco, Bob now advises large European utilities companies and industry regulators.

Join the UK Chapter

I agree to receiving occasional emails from the UK Chapter of the SD Society.